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This directory is dedicated to piezoelectric and heel-strike generation systems for generating power from "good vibrations".
- "Everything moves, and everything that moves is expending some form of energy - kinetic energy to be precise. Some of this energy generally goes to waste, after all if you hit your foot on the ground, very little will actually happen. But thanks to advances in technology, it is now possible to recover some of that energy and turn it into electricity." Quote from Jorge Chapa, Inhabitat
- Artificial Muscle, Inc - Artificial Muscle Inc. is an innovative high volume manufacturer that is bringing the unique and newly patented Electroactive Polymer Artificial Muscle (EPAM) technology from the labs of SRI International to the many industries that today need or use electrical transducers and actuators. The Universal Muscle Actuator (UMA) is the basic building block for AMI's initial generation of EPAM™ actuators. The UMA utilizes a patented diaphragm cartridge configuration using AMI's patented EPAM™ and provides an actuator platform that can be utilized for a broad range of applications.
- The Facility - As a multi-skilled award winning architecture, art and design practice with offices near London Bridge we are dedicated to exploring new ways of producing and communicating architecture and design to engage with the communities these projects serve.
- Spinnaker Tower Stairs to Generate Electricity - Kinetic energy is looking more and more promising, particularly as a way to create small amounts of energy for individual devices. Expect to hear more about this field in the coming months. (Inhabitiat; June 19, 2008)
- Light fantastic: pedestrians to generate power - The power of the wind and the tide have been harnessed – now the footfall of trudging shoppers is to become the latest source of emission-free energy. (The Sunday Times; June 8, 2008)
- The Facility – Facility:Innovate is a sister company of The Facility Architects born from their innovative R&D projects and is also developing a variety of other methods to harvest lost energy.
The devices they develop convert the mechanical movement associated with footsteps or transport vibration into electricity. When harvesting power from footsteps they use a flooring system that incorporates a matrix of hydraulic compression cushions. The energy harvested from every footstep pushes fluid through a micro-turbine, generating power that is stored in a super-capacitor. This electricity is then utilised locally. When harvesting power from vibrations they use a magnetic beam and coil arrangement to power light fittings. The beam resonates in tune with ambient transport vibration within the generating coil. This electricity is then used to power LED emitters within the self-contained units.
- Charging up the stairs - Energy harvesting is an exciting field to explore, looking at ways to tap into the energy available from the workings of the human body or transport vibrations. (BBCNews; May 24, 2006)
- Pacesetter - Pacesetters is a project created by Facility Architects, a London-based design firm. Its aim is to harness the vibrations generated by activities within a city and generate electricity for lighting purposes.
- Man Power - "When we walk along a pavement, eight watts of energy is wasted - absorbed by the ground - with each heel. Yet it's possible to harvest at least 30 per cent of that energy," explains Claire Price, a director at The Facility Architects in London. (The Independent ( London); Oct. 26, 2006)
Disclosed generators includes one or more transducers that use electroactive polymer films to convert mechanical energy to electrical energy. The generators may include one or more transmission mechanisms that transfer a portion of an unused biological energy source, an unused environmental energy source or combinations of both to the one or more transducers located in the generators. The energy received by the transducers may be converted to electrical energy by the transducers in conjunction with conditioning electronics located within the generator. A heel-strike generator is disclosed that is integrated into the heel of footwear and is used to convert mechanical energy generated during human bipedal motion to electrical energy.